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Just a thought before the season starts

post #1 of 40
Thread Starter 
Sometimes, I get a little sick up and fed of all the pissin in the snow contests that happen here. Do you think that the skiers still on the green runs get a little intimidated by that? I try to remember that there are beginners here who are getting first impressions of this sport from what is said here.

I suppose also, that I could go on and on about how cool I am to ski the blue groomers. It would no doubt impress the first year skiers. But part of the thrill of skiing is the LEARNING to go beyond your capabilities, not boasting about your abilities.

I've never forgotten my first years on skis. I LOVE to see others learning, because someday they'll do what I did.....One day they're looking at skiers while riding up on the lift and saying "I want to ski like THAT" while watching a person glide down a run. Then one day, OTHERS are watching YOU, and THEY'RE saying, "I want to ski like THAT".

And I never had to say a word. :
post #2 of 40
Bonni, ya gotta separate wheat from chaff and not worry about comparisons. This will be only my sixth season on skis and I clearly recall how long it took to get feeling confident enough to pay attention to my own progress and not worry about the the look of it. To be Dr. Phil for a moment, claim your skiing, accept it for what it is, aim for progress as it suits your style and objectives and remember that for every skier who is sure they're the cat's pajamas, there are a whole lot more who'd ski rings around 'em.

Don't sweat the small stuff.

Bottom line: is it fun?

keep it fun. that's the best thing that got in my head. keep it fun. and a challenge can be fun, too.

these things you know.

- "Sick up and fed"

[ October 16, 2003, 12:18 PM: Message edited by: ryan ]
post #3 of 40

Great post. I agree. A great skier enjoys the sport and doesn't have to brag and he/she knows that there is always somebody better.
post #4 of 40
Thread Starter 
I know, ryan, but do others? I remember when I first stumbled onto this site, I thought, Jesus, I am not EVEN in the league these guys are......how can I have a conversation with them and have anything worthwhile to contribute?

Then I read posts by Bob Barnes, and Weems, who bolstered my confidence enough to start posting. These guys are great skiers, but not egotistical. I'm not the kind of person to back away from Greatness ( ), but you have to admit, if you're a small dog running with the big dogs, it can get scary.

I've heard that some people may not bring newbies to the Academy because of just that scary factor. That's kind of sad, because I can see how this place might put people off. Had I been a different person, I might not be here either.

There's a way to talk about your talents without showboating. (When you know what that is, let ME in on it. )

Just an opinion I hold, as I'm sure not everyone here has that view.
post #5 of 40
well, i agree that i have never encountered the "ego stuff" anywhere else in life that i've come across in the ski world. plenty do seem to invest a lot of energy in letting everyone else know what they can do, etc. HOWEVER, i have made some good friends in skiing who do manage to leave that crap at the door and i suspect/hope they're people i'll get to know better, as they're just plain old good people for whom skiing is simply a way of life and not about pissing contests.

i guess i'd say, again, to try to let that stuff go if it really pushes your buttons, 'cause you're not going to change it.
post #6 of 40
We all come to these forums for different reasons. Some may want to learn a better technique to turn. Some might be looking to sell a pair of skis. Some might be looking for advice on new skis, or a destination resort. Some might want to talk a little bit of smack about abilities. Some might want to discuss a great place to take the family. You get my point...

While pissing into the snow at the top of a chute can annoy some, it motivates others. Similar to the way some might be motivated to learn that new technique by a favorite instructor, these people learn this way. There are many different aspects to skiing, some you/I will agree with, some you/I won't. But why would we want to turn this site into a one sided coin?

When you read a ski magazine, do we only look at the pictures of what we are capable of?
post #7 of 40
Thread Starter 
Good points, Altaskier. You're right of course.

I'm not trying to homogenize anything, just bringing up a point. It's nice to know the viewpoints of others, whether I agree or not.

We can carry this conversation over to snowboarders, and would it be the same? I have my daughter's snowboard and I thought I'd give it a whirl. But do I dare talk about that here? Or would you think I'd get skewered? I'd like to be able to talk to people about snowboarding without a ration from the skiers. It's all snowsports, and all good, so why not here? There are a lot of skiers who also board.
post #8 of 40
I think that newbies need to feel welcome to the sport and to the site. I've been skiing for a long time(37 years) and I have to admit that I was somewhat intimidated when I first came to this site. I've only recently become more involved here.

It's great to want to improve your skills and to have questions answered by people in the know, but when those answers make you feel stupid for asking the question, that can be a turn off to some. For me it was a call to get on the same page...this happens too.

Professionally, I am a teacher of special needs students. One of the golden rules of that profession is that you celebrate everyone's accomplishments no matter how small they may seem. For the person making progress that might be a great accomplishment and the turning point that will lead to even greater progress. Criticism is necessary for growth, don't get me wrong. You have to know what you are doing wrong before you can correct it.

When dealing with my students I try to imagine myself being the person getting the criticism (god knows I've had my share). I try to think of how I would feel if I only got negative criticism. For them I try to sandwich the negative in between 2 positives. Sometimes that is really hard, especially if you don't know the person, but it can be done.

I think back to about 20 years ago now. I had a friend who's boyfriend had just given her a pair of skis with brakes. We were skiing together for the first time since she got them and she said, "Mike told me that these skis have brakes, how do I use them?" I laughed so loud and long that my stomach hurt. It was a sincere question, I made her feel really stupid for having asked it and I didn't mean to do that.

If I had known then what I know now I might have said something like, "Gee Mel, those are really nice skis. So Mike told you they have brakes, huh? Well, brakes on skis only stop the ski if it comes off when you fall. It keeps the ski from taking off down the hill and hitting someone, and unlike the safety straps you had on your other skis, it doesn't keep the ski with you. Remember when you fell last year, the ski stayed with you and hit you in the head. I'm sure glad he got you those new skis, I bet you will ski great on them."

I'm not saying that you need to sugar coat everything. Maybe just a "I'm glad you asked....(criticism/comment)...I hope if you have more questions you will ask them too."

Now Gloating about your own skill and prowness, well, that's a different story...Bonni, others, I think that is just the male testosterone being thrown around.

Sorry for the rant!
post #9 of 40
Thread Starter 
Ranting accepted here. It's what expands your ideas.
post #10 of 40
Well, I'm almost 50 and got coerced into trying skiing last year -- ended up absolutely loving it after a few lessons. Indeed, my wife and I are hoping to get a bunch of skiing in this year. By the end of last year we were skiing easy/moderate blues comfortably and in control. On steeper blues we were still resorting to more defensive skiing. We want to improve and are planning to attend the New England Ski Tune-Up - we may well be the worst skiers there, but what the hell. I visit skiing forums more to learn than to share my miniscule wisdom about ski technique, ski equipment, or ski resorts. I don't participate more because I don't think I have much knowledge of worth to share. But overall, I've not found the tone of this forum to be especially unfriendly to newbies -- and there's one participant on this forum who's been extremely helpful to me via personal e-mails. In part, I think the nature of the web brings out the best and the worst in folks. I golf, but I find it very hard to believe that all the folks who say they drive it 320 yards plus really do. So I think extending the welcome mat to encourage novice skiers to participate is a great thing, but I don't really think most of you are not.
post #11 of 40
I don't participate more because I don't think I have much knowledge of worth to share. But overall, I've not found the tone of this forum to be especially unfriendly to newbies -- and there's one participant on this forum who's been extremely helpful to me via personal e-mails. In part, I think the nature of the web brings out the best and the worst in folks.
NewSkier, you probably have your share of wisdom and knowledge about many other things that you can share with all of us (golf for example, I know nothing about that). Your comments and questions are always welcome. I agree with your comments about the nature of the web and about people here being helpful, I never found anyone unfriendly or rude. I was intimidated, however, when some of the technical words were used that I did not know. Not knowing the membership, I did not want to look stupid, so I did not ask (that was stupid of me)

[ October 16, 2003, 04:47 PM: Message edited by: skierteach ]
post #12 of 40
I can make perfectly carved turns while carrying a bag of lemon poppy scones in my left hand and sipping a latte with my right. So what's wrong with that? :
post #13 of 40
My Two Cents : )

Don't let the ego stuff get you down, there's always going to be people like that, no matter where you go. People who are busy talking big always make me wonder whats going on inside to compel them to act that way.

Also remember - be humble because no matter what you engage in, there is ALWAYS going to be somebody better then you.

Skiing is more than a lifestyle, it's a culture. Although skiing is my favorite, I participate in other sports but I have yet to find the same type of energy that you get on mountain or in the lodge after one of those top 5 days of the season. Everyone's wiped out but look around - you can tell it was a good day.

Ski for yourself and have a good time [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
post #14 of 40

Is your post reactive or preemptive?

Has some "territory-marking" occurred recently that has you upset, or are you anticipating that it will inevitably show up as we start to move into the heart of the season? On a similar vein, you weren't too shy to mildly chastise me on a separate thread about my lack of knowledge of how to size an image. How is that different?

I only ask because my own assessment is that the board has been pretty mild (dare I say... "slow") lately. Other than the news of your engagement, of course, which is wonderful.

Personally, I'm a fan of as many diverse opinions and threads as possible, so I'm kind of curious about what's got your dander up.

I spent the last 10 days on the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon making an absolute idiot of myself rowing a whitewater raft, so it's possible that I missed something important while I was endangering the lives of my crash-dummy passengers.

Help me out? Whassup?

post #15 of 40
Thread Starter 
Bob, I guess it's preemptive, but it stems from a few things I've heard lately that have me thinking.

I've read all about how some skiers don't like boarders "ruining" their runs, about how I shouldn't venture into a mogul run if I have to slowly pick my way through and use the whole thing side to side if I need to, how I should have the skills to ski steeper stuff before I get on it for the first time (how does that work? How do you learn to ride a motorcycle before you ride it for the first time?????), that if I'm a slow skier, I should get off the black runs so people can bomb down them without having to worry about me being there at all, etc.

It's this intimidating factor I'm talking about. Carvemeister can ski perfectly carrying a latte, and that's VERY COOL! I admire that! I don't have a problem with that.

But would I feel comfortable to discuss learning to board here, or would there be a "pissing contest" and I be run out on a rail for trashing the EpicSki, which is for SKIERS only....you know the stuff I'm talking about.

Do new people here get intimidated? Do they think about the stuff they read here? I was remembering when I went to Deer Valley last year. I was in some moguls that, TO ME, were not easy to move in. I thought about some of the posts here and I just KNEW that there were probably people skiing past me that were shaking their heads and thinking, "I wish she'd get out of here....she obviously doesn't know what she's doing."

How am I to learn, to get the experience, if I'm not in it? For the people learning, nothing kills the fun of trying like remembering some jerks posts about staying out of areas you aren't an expert in.

I'm going to learn to board. I may pick the brains of people here who board. I am going to be in moguls this year. I'll want to talk about it. I'm just not looking forward to the flak I'll get from some of those people who think I shouldn't be doing either.
post #16 of 40
Thread Starter 
PS. I didn't mean to chastise you about that picture, Bob. I didn't know how to make them smaller either. I'm sorry if I came off that way, although it probably did. I apologize.

Newskier--Welcome! I'll be seeing you at the Tune Up!

Gatecrasher-yep. [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
post #17 of 40
Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni,

..... sit where ya want, turn how ya want, ride what you have n fck the bloody neighbours

Oz [img]smile.gif[/img]

[ October 17, 2003, 06:56 AM: Message edited by: man from Oz ]
post #18 of 40
Oz has a way of flat-out just gettin to the damn point. [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
post #19 of 40
Unless you are a physical hazard to yourself or others, your lift ticket gives you as much right to the run than anyone else. Also, bear in mind with posts our elevation of our own skills (some threads of self-perception a little back) in our own minds. Talk on a message board does not always correspond to onslope prowess (I'm waiting to eat snow on one of my first runs, I just know it). If you enjoy your day of skiing, it was a success. Listening to others complain will only detract form your enjoyment.
post #20 of 40
Thread Starter 
posted by man from oz:

sit where ya want, turn how ya want, ride what you have n fck the bloody neighbours
Have you ever known me to mince words?

I'll do what I want, for sure. I'll take the crap I get for my posts, I just don't think I want to take it without barking about it, dammit!

Please, someone tell me to Shut Up! :
post #21 of 40
Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni, Bonni,

post #22 of 40
While pissing into the snow at the top of a chute can annoy some, it motivates others.
Bonni, others, I think that is just the male testosterone being thrown around.
Reason #286 Why I Love This Site

[ October 17, 2003, 07:53 AM: Message edited by: nolo ]
post #23 of 40

Pick up a board, go boarding, bring your experience here. Why would anybody care? Sure, I hate boarders, but I hate skiers too! Actually, its attitudes that I hate, not the sport. I am sure that there are more one or two boarders around here. I used to board all the time when I lived in the Midwest, it was great! Still have the board collecting dust in the garage.

Advice: Get some of those roller blade wrist guards to wear under your gloves.

Also, why worry about what other people think about your skiing? Ignore their comments, ski for yourself. Sure, I am going to be pissed if I catch you sideslipping down a 50 degree narrow powder filled chute. But, there is no reason why you can't be in there. I would recomend becoming comfortable in steeps, then in powder, then in chutes before venturing into a place like that. Dangerious comes to mind in a situation like that. Mogul fields, have at them, only way to learn is to do in this skiers opinion.

Just ski, enjoy, have a beer at the end of the day, and stop worrying!
post #24 of 40
Bob, I wanna hear about that rafting trip.
post #25 of 40
Bonni, have fun boarding, but I hope this doesn't turn into EpicKnuckledrag.com.
post #26 of 40
What really get's my dander up is when someone is on a expert trail and has no right to be there. Now I know you have a right to be there because you bought a lift ticket. That's fine. The problem comes when the lower level skier thinks that they have the right to get in other peoples way. I know the down hill skier has the right of way. But isn't it equally important to try to stay out of peoples way? When I'm in the bumps and having a hard time, I try to look around and make sure I'm not going to ski into someones line. I little common courtesy goes a long way. I wish people would realize they are sharing the trail with other people. If I get off the lift and see that a lot of skier are going down the run I was going, I will try and wait for them to get a ways a head before I go. I don't want to get in there way and hopfully they will be spead out so I can ski around them. If not I will stop again and wait for them to move on. If someone has fallen I will stop to help that skier or boarder up. That's just my way of giving something back. If someone looks like they are lost I will offer help. We need to remember we all started out as beginners

I do ski fast and I know there are many other skier's that are better then me. We all have to share the same snow.

One of the joy's of this sport is that you can alway's learn something to improve your skiing. Break though's are great. I love to learn a new skill, it all adds to the pleasure of skiing.

The better I get, the more fun this becomes!!!

[ October 17, 2003, 09:13 AM: Message edited by: smithby ]
post #27 of 40

Okay, now I see what you mean.

As far as boarding is concerned, I'd love to hear about your exploits. My own experience was short, fun, and painful. Four hours after starting to board, I did the classic caught-heel, feet-out-from-under-you, put-your-hand-down-to-break-your-fall move. I broke my wrist in about 8 places : and haven't been on a board since. Despite that, I thought it was great fun and I would highly recommend it (as long as you pad every square inch of your body when you start).

If someone indicates they don't want to hear about your boarding, I suggest you follow Oz's most excellent advice.

The question about mogul fields is a bit different. Personally, having people below me in mogul fields has never bothered me in the slightest. Of course, I avoid moguls like the plague. Still, you have every right to be there and anyone who can't avoid you is skiing out of control.


It appears you're from the East. I've never skied there, but my understanding is that many of the trails - particularly the more difficult mogul runs - are much narrower than what we typically have here in the West. Maybe that means you're more likely to run into someone who's actually blocking a run. Here, there always seems to be *plenty* of room on a mogul run to avoid someone who's picking their way down. I've just never considered it that much of an issue.

I guess I can understand how you might be frustrated is you path is blocked, but it really is every skier's right to be there and your obligation to avoid them if you're the uphill skier. Maybe you can adjust the time of day or the runs you choose so that you run into the problem less often.

post #28 of 40
Originally posted by AltaSkier:
Bob, I wanna hear about that rafting trip.
Ruth and I were invited on a private trip with a bunch of friends. We floated from Lee's Ferry (start of the river float trips) down to Phantom Ranch, where Ruth and I hiked up to the South Rim and the rest of the party kept going. Matter of fact, the rest of our party won't finish the trip until this coming Tuesday. Ruth and I were on the water for eight days.

For anyone who's never done it, the Grand Canyon is an unbelievable experience. We floated, rowed, ran rapids, did day hikes up into spectacular side canyons, camped, and just had a great time.

I had almost no whitewater experience and had never rowed a raft in my life. I assumed I would simply be ballast on the front of someone's raft. Our rafts ranged from 14-foot to 18-foot self-bailing, oar-powered (as opposed to paddle) rafts that each had a rower and one or two passengers.

Through an odd combination of events (one rower developed a bad back and another got pretty spooked by an unscheduled swim through one of the worst rapids), I ended up being a rower for much of the time.

I know there are probably a whole bunch of very experienced whitewater people on this board who would just laugh at what a wuss I was, but I was terrified rowing through some of those rapids. The Colorado in the Grand Canyon is big, scary water with a ton of power. I don't have enough experience to unconsciously be able to pull or push oars the right way at the right time, so I was constantly trying to adjust my line or avoid holes, etc.

The parallels with learning to ski are probably quite close. I bet I worked five times as hard as the experienced rowers because I just don't know how to move the right ways. Movements our other rowers did without even thinking took all the concentration (and luck) I could muster. There's also the element of a completely unforgiving force. For learning skiers, gravity feels that way. For me, those waves and holes and rocks were dangerous things that were utterly foreign to me.

I got sideways in big holes and caught in eddies and off line all the time. Luckily, I was on the biggest raft, which was about as maneuverable as a barge but also was the hardest one to turn over.

I had one of our experienced people row my raft in the two worst rapids, but I rowed a bunch of water that I would never have dreamed I'd do going into the trip. It was an incredible learning experience.

If you ever get a chance to float the Canyon, do it. Words can't describe how beautiful it is.

post #29 of 40
Bob, now that you mention it I have noticed that out west the runs are wider, it is easier not to have someone cut you off. In the bumps I'm not the one who is zipper lineing. I'm the one who is tiring to get better in the bumps. I do try my best to keep out of the way of the true bump skiers.
I have noticed a that as I'm skiing knowing where I want to go, much like driving, I tend to stay to the right if I know i'm making a right turn onto another trail. Have you noticed people come across the trail to make a turn that is on the opposit side from where they were just skiing. I have been hit or have hit two skiers who when I last looked were on the other side of the trail. I have learned, long ago, to look ahead, sometimes I may look to far and forget to give one last look.

I have also learned to look up hill before I make a big direction change, I tend to ski in a line and try to be predictable to someone behind me.
I don't know if that is something you can teach in a lesson?

Bonnie, Do be afraid to post on this site. I found this (home) last winter, It has given me hours of enjoyment. I have found the people here to be very friendly and helpful. I hope that over time you will also find that. I have in a sence met a lot of people who I now consider friends, even though we may never meet face to face. The normal people who respone to most of the post are all great people. It seems that you may already know some of the people.
By the way wasn't it you that had the photo of the snow man at Stowe?

[ October 17, 2003, 11:22 AM: Message edited by: smithby ]
post #30 of 40
Agrees, smithby. I only mentioned safety, but I should have mentioned courtesy. Buying a lift ticket gives us equal rights to the slopes, but we should acknowledge that we aren't the only ones out there to enjoy ourselves.
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